'''John Thomas Scharf''' (May 1, 1843 – February 28, 1898) was a United States historian
and Confederate States of America soldier
. He is best known for his published historical works. Modern historians and researchers cite
his comprehensive histories as primary source
Scharf used a formulaic and detailed approach to preparing his historical works. He contacted everyone who could provide information about his subject and used detail questionnaires to capture responses to his inquiries.
The J. Thomas Scharf Collection, 1730s-1892, held by the Maryland Historical Society
, shows off his massive collection of original source materials.
Scharf was one of the first American historians to consistently use newspapers as a primary source. Rather than trying to analyze the...